Justifying a Coup d’État in the Name of Democracy?

Why is there so much resistance to call the forced resignation of Bolivian President Evo Morales by it’s name? To call these events a coup and at the same time to justify and/or being comfortable with them would involve an express rejection of democracy as “the only game in town” and amount to normalizing non-institutional and violent means for the handover of power. The case is a challenge for comparative constitutionalism in general.

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Wenn Menschen­rechts­verletzungen nicht benannt werden

Die massiven Proteste im Irak finden in Deutschland vergleichsweise wenig Aufmerksamkeit. Das könnte damit zusammenhängen, dass die Bundesregierung und andere westliche Staaten die massiven Menschenrechtsverletzungen dort erst spät, zögerlich und sporadisch benannt und öffentlich kritisiert haben – im Widerspruch zu Deutschlands ausgerufenem Ziel, für eine regelbasierte internationale Ordnung einzustehen.

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Advertising: Global Constitutionalism (Journal)

Volume 8, Issue 3


November 2019


WEBSITE


Global Constitutionalism

Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law

  • The constitutions of international organisations: How institutional design seeks to foster diplomatic deliberation
    DIANA PANKE, FRANZISKA HOHLSTEIN, GURUR POLAT
  • The transnational dimension of constitutional rights: Framing and taming ,private' governance beyond the state
    LARS VIELLECHNER
  • AND MORE ARTICLES..

The Impossibility of Upholding the Rule of Law When You Don’t Know the Rules of the Law

On October 28 2019, it became known that the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration has been systematically breaching the rule of law for years when it applied the EEA legislation incorrectly in cases of unemployment and sickness benefits and work assessment allowances. According to the Attorney General, at least 48 people have been wrongly convicted of social security fraud, 36 of whom have been sentenced to prison. Later investigations have revealed that the number is much higher. This blatant disregard of the rule of law illustrates what happens when political pressure meets legal professionals, judges and an administration who are blissfully ignorant when it comes to European law.

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The End of Parliamentary Government in Europe

Has parliamentary government, after almost two hundred years of honoured service, come to an end in Europe? The fact that Spain had two elections in seven months and is still nowhere near a stable government is just the latest of many signs that it is indeed so – and I wonder what the ruling classes in the European countries, excluding France, are waiting for in order to take note of the fact and to do, night and day, in order to put in place the necessary remedies.

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From “Nuclear Option” to Damp Squib?

To date, three Article 7(1) TEU hearings have been held in respect of Poland (26 June, 18 September and 11 December 2018) and one in respect of Hungary (16 September 2019). The trouble starts with having to obtain the related documents via repeated freedom of information requests. Analysing those documents, however, reveals further significant shortcomings of the procedure.

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Peter Handke wird Österreicher gewesen sein

Die Aussagekraft des Satzes „Peter Handke wird wieder Österreicher gewesen sein“ ist nicht nur durch das Futur II entstellt, sondern auch durch einen jugoslawischen Pass. Der österreichische Literaturnobelpreisträger ist also (vielleicht) gar kein Österreicher. Man könnte jetzt meinen, dass diese dramaturgische Volte geradezu bezeichnend ist für die ambivalente Rezeption der Entscheidung des Literaturnobelpreiskomitees, Peter Handke in einen erlauchten Kreis zu heben, dessen Berechtigung der Preisträger selbst immer wieder infrage gestellt hat. Die Posse um Handkes Pass, besehen aus einem ganz anderen Blickwinkel, lädt allerdings ein, einen etwas grundsätzlicheren Blick auf das österreichische Verhältnis zu Doppel- und Mehrfachstaatsangehörigkeiten zu werfen.

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Außer Kontrolle

Das Bundesverfassungsgericht hat den Antrag der Fraktion der Linken in dem Organstreitverfahren über den Einsatz der Bundeswehr in Syrien als unzulässig abgewiesen. Das Ergebnis der Entscheidung war vorhersehbar, aber die Begründung des Bundesverfassungsgerichts ist nicht über Kritik erhaben. Das Gericht verfestigt in seinem Beschluss verfahrensrechtliche Grenzen, untergräbt die Substanz der materiellen Anforderungen an die Rechtfertigung eines Militäreinsatzes und definiert den Strukturwandel eines Vertrages in großzügiger Weise. Von den ursprünglich hehren Bemühungen des Verfassungsgerichts um die rechtliche Einhegung von Militäreinsätzen bleiben so nur noch fromme Wünsche.

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A Constitution Borne Out of Actual Bullets

When Sergio Verdugo published his post "The Chilean Political Crisis and Constitutions as Magic Bullets", Chile’s President Sebastián Piñera’s approval rate was at 14%. Less than a week later, polls suggest a worrying and unprecedented 9% support. Although President Piñera has adopted significant measures, people are still protesting. It is not likely that this will change until the people have had the opportunity to participate in constitutional deliberations – and it is now upon the President to act.

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Threats to Brazilian Democracy Gain Traction

Democracy in Brazil is under attack and facing a significant level of backsliding. The developments in recent years, from Dilma Rousseff’s parliamentary coup to Jair Bolsonaro’s ascent to power, have shown that democracy erodes in an incremental process. Lawmaker Eduardo Bolsonaro has recently taken another step in that direction when he publicly suggested that a 1964-1985 dictatorship’s decree should be repeated in case the Brazilian left-wing movements took a more radical position. His statements are prohibited under Brazilian law and Brazil’s institutions need to hold Eduardo Bolsonaro accountable in order to put brakes on the country’s democratic decline.

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